In many ways, in many markets, today’s global pandemic has reset the game board. Now brand leaders are forced to regain lost ground, while brand laggards willing to act quickly, decisively and boldly have a chance to lead. New research from McKinsey surfaces the extent of Covid-19 pandemic’s impact on brands. The main theme of the pandemic’s story is one of fear and uncertainty. Given how swiftly things are changing, McKinsey takes a weekly pulse of consumer sentiment across 45 countries. Tom Kaneshige at CMO Council sat down with Gregg to learn more about the shifting consumer sentiment landscape and this tale of two stories happening during one of the most tumultuous economic times in modern history.
The game board has been reset
For many brands globally, this reset has shown consumers reaching out to new brands and not just sticking with brands they know and trust. Gregg says “This had a lot to do with what was in stock and the new consumer journeys being formed with digital platforms as the first step”
“For many brands and companies, this is a unique moment to increase their share and relevance with consumers. This is the second side of the story.”
Five Hallmarks from global companies to strengthen your position thorough the crisis
The ability to be ambidextrous – Operating at two, if not three speeds simultaneously and do them well. Dealing with right now (speed one) and continuing to win consumers in the recovery (speed two). With the third speed being able to reimagine what life post-COVID is going to look like; the customer experiences to offer, the revenue streams to invest in, and the business model evolution itself.
The idea of reimagining the business – Now is the time for CMOs to reimagine the value proposition in this more virtual world. The amount of digital media being consumed and the importance of digital touch points is likely going to stick. In fact, one of Mckinsey’s big findings is that over half of consumers believe they will stick with some of the new brands and new digital journeys after the crisis.
Granularity – We know good Marketing should be personalised, but now it is hitting a whole new level since the rise in importance of hyper-local. A new magnitude in sales variability from postcode to postcode, category to category, that is critical for marketers to understand. This variability is likely to remain true for some time given consumer uncertainty; marketers must be able to quickly identify and predict where demand is going to surge (and not). This is a unique opportunity to meet this demand with the right messaging, content and customer promise.
Adopting an agile operating model – The importance of being able to be where the consumer needs you to be at the right time and how you pull that off in a virtual world. We are seeing some companies rewire their ways of working — viewing the virtual context as a “clean sheet” opportunity — re-architecting media plans and thinking about reallocation of dollars across different messages and media channels.
The concept of self-banked growth – Marketers need to consider how to self-bank their investment. We have seen marketing leaders achieve anywhere between 10 to 30 percent of efficiency across the marketing cost envelope, where reducing the spend does not have to affect the customer — and ultimately can self-bank growth investments.